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Chapter 5 The Police: Role and Function. Learning Objectives. Understand the organization of police departments. Articulate the complexities of the police role. Discuss the concept of patrol and its effectiveness.

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learning objectives
Learning Objectives
  • Understand the organization of police departments.
  • Articulate the complexities of the police role.
  • Discuss the concept of patrol and its effectiveness.
  • Be familiar with methods of improving patrol, including broken windows policing.
  • Discuss the organization of police detectives.
  • Know what forensics is and what forensic experts do for police agencies.
  • Understand the concept of community policing.
  • Discuss the concept of problem-oriented policing.
  • Be familiar with the various police support functions.
the police organization
The Police Organization
  • Most municipal police departments are independent agencies within the executive branch of government
  • Most follow para-military model adhering to semi-rigid chain of command
  • Personnel decisions often based on time-in-rank
the police role
The Police Role
  • Crime fighting is a small part of overall role
  • Duties include:
    • handling minor disturbances
    • calls for service
    • administrative duties
    • traffic
  • Police role is varied and complex
the patrol function
The Patrol Function
  • Account for 2/3 of most departments’ personnel
  • Deters crime through visible presence
  • Maintains public order
  • Responds to law violations or emergencies
  • Identifies and apprehend criminals
  • Aids citizens in distress
  • Facilitates movement of people and traffic
  • Creates a sense of safety and security
does patrol deter crime
Does Patrol Deter Crime?
  • Kansas City Patrol Study
  • Levels of patrol had no significant impact on any outcome measure
proactive policing and directed patrol
Proactive Policing and Directed Patrol
  • Use of aggressive, proactive patrol may help reduce crime
  • Active enforcement of minor regulations - more likely to experience lower felony crime
  • Directed patrol – involves concentrating police resources in high crime areas
broken windows policing
Broken Windows Policing
  • Police as maintainers of community order and safety
    • Neighborhood disorder creates fear
    • Neighborhoods give out crime-promoting signals
    • Police need citizen cooperation
  • Community preservation, public safety, and order maintenance – not crime fighting – should be primary focus of patrol
the investigation function
The Investigation Function
  • Detectives investigate causes of crime and attempt to identify those responsible
  • Undercover/sting operations
    • Police deceive criminals into openly committing illegal acts
    • Common in investigation of prostitution, gambling, and narcotics
    • Critics argue constitutes entrapment or may encourage commission of additional offenses
evaluating investigations
Evaluating Investigations
  • Police have only a 5 percent chance of solving a crime if more than 15 minutes elapse from the time of occurrence to reporting
  • Detectives generally lack sufficient resources to carry out lengthy probes unless crime is serious
  • Most crimes are solved when the perpetrator is identified at scene of crime by patrol officers
community policing
Community Policing
  • Set of programs and strategies designed to bring police and the public closer together and create a more cooperative working environment
changing the police role
Changing the Police Role
  • Neighborhood orientation
  • Changing management styles
  • Changing recruitment and training
challenges of community policing
Challenges of Community Policing
  • Defining community
  • Defining roles
  • Changing supervisor attitudes
  • Reorienting police values
  • Revising training
  • Reorienting recruitment
community policing effectiveness
Community Policing Effectiveness
  • Some community policing efforts can reduce disorder and impact the crime rate
  • No clear-cut evidence that community policing is highly successful at reducing all types of crime
problem oriented policing
Problem Oriented Policing
  • Stresses proactive problem solving, not reactive crime fighting
  • Hot spots of crime – places from which a significant portion of all police calls originate
support functions
Support Functions
  • Administrative functions (records, etc.)
  • Internal Affairs Division
  • Budgeting
  • Dispatch centers
  • Training bureau